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Thursday, August 09, 2007

Three on Repeat

Here's my lame attempt for some music recommendations based on three songs that I've been listening to on repeat for the past few days.

1.) Brother Ali - The Undisputed Truth

Brother Ali is the premier Midwestern, Muslim albino rapper (not to be confused with Krondon, the West Coast's and Strong Arm Steady's premier albino rapper). His album, The Undisputed Truth, is definitely the forerunner for my favorite album of 2007. Poignant and political, kinda reminds me of my a good way...and if my dad were a Midwestern, Muslim albino rapper in his late 20s. Wait, that wasn't a very good description maybe. I just mean, that when I listen to the album, it reminds me of conversations that I used to have with my dad. Not in terms of content, but it's just real solid and practical stuff, with undertones of, "Hey if this doesn't work out, then let's just kick somebody's ass"

I kinda gotta give it up for Rhymesayers Entertainment. They're one of the few labels (and I could maybe put Quannum in this category, as well) where I'm consistently satisfied with the artists and music that they put out, even if I've never heard of them before. It's kinda like, "Oh, have you heard so-and-so?" and I'm like, "No." And then the other person is like, "Yeah, they're on Rhymesayers...." and I go check it out...and it's pretty dope to me. It started with Atmosphere, then Murs, then Felt, then I Self Devine, Brother Ali and Psalm One and a whole bunch of other artists. Maybe it says a lot about my music tastes, who knows? I fucks wit it, though...

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Brother Ali - Uncle Sam Goddamn

Brother Ali - Uncle Sam Goddamn

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Here's what I've been listening to all week though:

Brother Ali - Pedigree

2.) Dujeous - Game 7

I first heard of Dujeous (pronounced DOO-jee-us) from the music blog Surviving the Golden Age, where their mixtape Game 7 was reviewed. I downloaded the mixtape and listened to it at work. Then, I went home and downloaded downloaded it again. Normally, I tend to agree with the reviews on Surviving the Golden Age (at least, as far as hip hop is concerned and I'll even forgive them for panning the new RBF album). However, I personally would have given Game 7 a solid 6 out of 10.

There is a terrible trend that's been going on in rap for awhile. It's called Rapper(s) + Live Band. In and of itself...not a bad thing. I like rappers. And I like live bands. I mean, The Roots have been doing that since forever and The Roots are great. Legendary, even. What I'm talking about -- and I feel as though the trend has become quite pronounced recently here in Germany -- is this whole thing where a rapper or crew get some kind of live backing band instead of a DJ (sometimes in addition to a DJ). To me, it always seems like they're trying to say, "Look at me, I'm a serious musician." Instead, a lot of the time it comes off as contrived and gimmicky. I came to see you rap, not to hear your band do instrumental solos. I don't know those fools and I don't want to.

Anyway, the thing I like about Dujeous is that the whole band thing is kind of understated, but it works. A live band should compliment the MCs and not try to overpower them. But maybe that just how I feel about it. Lyrics-wise, I've got no complaints. Game 7 is an above-average mixtape -- and I don't even like mixtapes in general -- I probably would have paid for it if they weren't giving it away for free. It's nothing innovative that's for sure, as much as I like the song "Bust Yo Shit" -- I kept waiting to hear Chali 2na come in on a verse and it kinda sounds like something off a Breakestra album. But hey, those are some good comparisons, right? And as long as it's a solid piece of work, you don't have to be innovative.

Dujeous ft. John Legend - Pro Choice

3.) Redman - Red Gone Wild

I'll keep this brief. I like Redman. I like his latest album. Red raps about the same shit he's always rapped about, namely weed, Brick City, and women's feet. This is my favorite song on the album:

Redman - Rite Now

Lastly, I just want to put this out there. Kanye's album is coming out on Sept. 11th. Please go out and buy it that day, so that 50 Cent will finally stop putting out music.

Thanks, Raven

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